I know this has been talked about here before, but I wasn’t around to have my say, so… I was sitting on a bench near Clapham Junction with my book. There was a girl with a clipboard sat down next to me, but she looked sort of off-duty andi didn’t think she’d dare interrupt my reading. When she said “what are you reading?” I was actually pleasantly surprised. She was, incidentally, incredibly beautiful. We chatted about Bollywood films (I was an extra in The Legend of Baghwhat Singh – one of her favourites!), books, my job, her j– wooooaah we were onto her job and suddenly she morphed back into her despicable “I’m going to mug you in the streets and piss you off so much you sign up for monthly donations”.
I don’t give to charity muggers, so after her 25 minute spiel I shook her hand and went back to my office. But I was pretty annoyed that she had managed to worm her way into my lunch break. I don’t mind the charities – this was Amnesty International – I think they do brilliant work. I don’t even particularly resent street fund-raising – the charities say they make a lot of money in this way from people who might otherwise be too idle to find out about causes they agree with. But I do resent the agencies that organise these collections and make a business out of global rubbishness. They hire pricks, then they pay them £12 an hour to assault the public – a cost which I don’t believe for one second the agencies bear the brunt of themselves. Anyway I’m convinced that, given the almost universal public hatred of these people, this medium is dead, and there must be a better way to raise awareness and encourage donations. Send me your ideas and I will get on it…
It could be, of course that I’m just bitter about being seduced by the beautiful charity collector, only to discover i was no different to the other men on the street :-( It reminds me of being in Thailand, where I had a fascinating conversation with a stripper, and then was horrified when she suddenly reached for my crotch. I believe they call what I have Naivety. But I prefer to think of it as innocent optimism.